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Title: Diversity without pluralism: Religious landscape in mainland China
Authors: Liang, Y. 
Keywords: China
Religious diversity
Religious pluralism
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher: MDPI AG
Citation: Liang, Y. (2018). Diversity without pluralism: Religious landscape in mainland China. Religions 9 (1) : 22. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Rights: Attribution 4.0 International
Abstract: The paper explores religious diversity and pluralism in the religioscape of mainland China with three examples. While religious diversity is de facto practice, “religious pluralism” is not socially recognised, culturally legitimised, or discursively institutionalised. On the one hand, state co-option of religious groups is achieved through particular definition of “religion” without the conceptualisation of pluralism, leaving undefined religious activities to cultural policy or national security measures. On the other hand, practices that might be identified as religious elsewhere does not usually self-identified as such, not to say seek for the right of religious freedom. To explain the absence of articulated/institutionalised “religious pluralism” in China, the paper provides three examples-civil activism against tomb-levelling campaign, “the Society of Disciples” (mentuhui), and a ritual service provider. The paper argues that the religioscape of mainland China is one with de facto religious diversity without the ideology of religious pluralism, because the diverse religious practices do not make a conscious reference to pluralism, remain non-institutional, disinterested in religious freedom, and, most important of all, below the state’s radar. © 2018 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
Source Title: Religions
ISSN: 20771444
DOI: 10.3390/rel9010022
Rights: Attribution 4.0 International
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